This past week has officially been a week of restaurants for me. Too lazy to go to the grocery store and restock my fridge, I have taken the habit of eating out by myself a few meals a week out. Yesterday was one such day.
Around 7pm I decided to venture out for food and found myself at a local watering hole that I frequent. I took my seat at the bar and asked for a menu. An older couple came up and asked if the stools beside me were taken. Being that I was alone, I shook my head and invited them to sit.
I had started my meal with the expectation that I would eat and leave, but I ended up in a 2-hour long conversation talking about everything for prison reform to Islamic feminism to our broken education system. The husband, a captain at a correctional facility, sat directly next to me and his wife, a real estate agent, on the other side of him. He was kind and would listen adding his opinion sparingly. His wife was outspoken and conservative. We disagreed on many things, but our conversation was diplomatic and lively.
Leaving the restaurant with each of their business cards in my hand I felt a sense of gratitude for being able to connect and discuss some really fascinating topics with two absolute strangers. It was an unexpected conversation and it totally made the solitary experience of dining alone not so solitary at all.